City of Nanaimo sued for allegedly providing 'misleading' information prior to apartment sale

By Dominic Abassi
February 23, 2018 - 4:48pm

The owner of 1 Chapel St. claimed the City provided inaccurate information prior to the purchase of the building.Google

NANAIMO — The City of Nanaimo is being sued for alleged negligence related to the purchase of a downtown Nanaimo apartment building.

Alberta-based real estate investment company NPR GP Inc. is seeking unspecified damages from the City related to NPR's 2012 purchase of the Seacrest Apartments at 1 Chapel St., according to a notice of civil claim filed in the Supreme Court of B.C. on Jan. 16.

NPR claimed the City's fire prevention officer told them there were no issues or outstanding orders related to the building or improvements on the property. The City's statement was in response to what the claim called NPR's due diligence prior to purchasing the apartment building.

"The City was negligent in making the Representation, which was false, inaccurate or misleading in light of the Property's non-compliance with the City's requirements at the time," the claim noted, adding NPR moved ahead with the purchase relying on the information provided by the City.

The claim said after NPR bought the property, the City advised that a previous owner had created 17 apartments by dividing two-bedroom units into separate apartments, which did not meet fire safety requirements.

"NPR therefore retained the services of a number of consultants and/or contractors and, at considerable expense, engaged in extensive discussions with the City in an attempt to develop a proposal for modification."

In September 2017, the City allegedly told NPR no modifications would suffice and the suites must be returned to their original state at NPR's expense.

None of the allegations have been proven in court. The City declined to comment.

NPR's legal counsel declined to say the amount the company is seeking in damages. The building has an assessed value of $14 million.


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